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We’ve seen enough football this season to determine which players have solidified roles in their respective offenses. Whether injuries have occurred or unexpected players have stepped up, we must react and make adjustments each and every week.
I’ll help you decide which fantasy football waiver wire pickups you should be making that could benefit your fantasy teams now, later in the season, or just for the upcoming Week 8.
Note: Free-Agent Acquisition Budget dollar bid prices for Week 8 based on a season-long budget of $100. Adjust your percentage and scale accordingly for your league’s unique FAAB allotment and your remaining FAAB dollars.
(Roster % is based on Yahoo! Fantasy leagues information.)
2021 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Week 8: Top Pickups
Rashod Bateman, WR, Baltimore Ravens (32% rostered)
If you haven’t already acquired Rashod Bateman, you better do it this week.
Bateman was targeted 6 times in his NFL debut last week. He caught 4 of those targets for just 29 yards. In his second NFL game, Bateman was targeted another 6 times and converted it into 80 receiving yards.
The Baltimore Ravens are heading into their bye week, so this could be a safe time to bid for Bateman. Lamar Jackson will continue to target the rookie as his production is inevitable in this high-scoring offense.
- Rashod Bateman Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $14
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Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Miami Dolphins (48% rostered)
Tua Tagovailoa has been amazing for fantasy since his return to action two weeks ago. He has thrown 40 or more times in each of his last two games. Tagovailoa has completed 65 passes for 620 yards and 6 touchdowns in that span.
He isn’t afraid to run the ball when he has to. Tagovailoa rushed 7 times for 51 yards in the last two weeks. This provides a safe floor from a fantasy football perspective.
Unfortunately, Tua will have a scary matchup on Halloween against the Buffalo Bills. This is the time to make a move on the cheap and save him for Week 9 and beyond.
- Tua Tagovailoa Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $12
Russell Gage, WR, Atlanta Falcons (10% rostered)
Matt Ryan has been without his full assortment of weapons for the majority of the season. With the departure of Julio Jones, Russell Gage was primed for a big season. Unfortunately, he has been dealing with an ankle injury.
Gage returned for the first time since Week 2 and took advantage of his opportunities. He caught 4 of 6 targets for 67 yards and a touchdown. The touchdown came on a 49-yard bomb from Ryan.
Now that Gage is back and healthy, he will be a top target for Matt Ryan moving forward. It’s his first productive game of the season, so you shouldn’t have to spend too much to acquire him.
- Russell Gage Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $8
C.J. Uzomah, TE, Cincinnati Bengals (18% rostered)
At this point, C.J. Uzomah’s upside is well worth a spot on your fantasy roster.
He has double-digit fantasy points in 3 of his last 4 games. Uzomah has gone for over 90 receiving yards in 2 of his last 4 games and has totaled 5 touchdowns in that span.
The tight end position is the most volatile position in fantasy. Any time a tight end scores 5 touchdowns in 4 weeks, they should not be left on waivers.
Joe Burrow may increase Uzomah’s target numbers moving forward, especially with the production they’ve combined for in limited looks.
- C.J. Uzomah Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $6
2021 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Week 8: Best Players To Stash
Samaje Perine, RB, Cincinnati Bengals (7% rostered)
Samaje Perine has been productive in each of his last two games, totaling 22 carries for 111 yards and a touchdown. He’s also been effective as a receiver, catching 5 of his 6 targets for 47 yards and a touchdown.
In Week 7, Joe Mixon was listed as healthy and had 12 carries. Perine logged 11 carries on the day and had just 7 fewer rushing yards than Mixon. Additionally, Perine was the only Bengals running back to score in Week 7.
If the Bengals can continue to be productive splitting carries between Mixon and Perine, it would benefit their team and star running back come playoff time.
For Perine, he may need the Bengals to have a decent lead to see the field more. Looking ahead at the schedule, it’s highly possible they hold decent leads, at least in their next couple of games.
- Samaje Perine Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $8
Brandon Bolden, RB, New England Patriots, (6% rostered)
Brandon Bolden has been heavily involved in the Patriots’ passing attack lately, racking up 4+ receptions in 3 of the last 4 games. He leads New England running backs in targets (22), receptions (20), receiving yards (162), and has the lone touchdown catch of the year for the backfield.
The Patriots have a difficult schedule ahead and Mac Jones will likely be throwing the ball a bunch to keep pace with opposing offenses. There’s no doubt that Bolden has made an impression on Bill Belichick, and he should continue to be involved in the upcoming game plans.
- Brandon Bolden Wire FAAB Bid: $5
2021 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Week 8: One-Week Streamer Plays
NEW – Kenneth Gainwell, RB, Philadelphia Eagles (22% rostered)
Miles Sanders exited last week’s game due to an ankle injury and did not return. Kenneth Gainwell took over as the most productive back in his absence, rushing just 5 times (2 fewer carries than Boston Scott) for 20 yards, but his value is in the receiving game.
With the Eagles trailing the Raiders, Jalen Hurts targeted Gainwell 8 times. He hauled in 4 receptions for 41 yards and a touchdown.
Whether Sanders plays or not in Week 8, it’s safe to assume Gainwell will be more involved in the offense moving forward. I’d expect Sanders to be limited at best against the Detroit Lions defense, who have given up the fourth-most fantasy points to running backs.
- Kenneth Gainwell Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $7
Cincinnati Bengals Defense D/ST (18% rostered)
This will likely be the stream of the week for defenses. The Cincinnati Bengals will take on the New York Jets in Week 8, who have given up the most fantasy points to opposing defenses this season.
The Jets will be without their starting quarterback, Zach Wilson, for the next 2-4 weeks due to a strained PCL. It looks like Mike White will be filling in while Wilson is out, who just threw 2 interceptions in Week 7. The Jets struggle on the offensive side, even with their franchise quarterback behind center.
The Bengals should have no trouble getting through the Jets’ offensive line and creating enough pressure to cause turnovers. The Bengals’ defense has 19 sacks and 5 interceptions on the year.
- Cincinnati Bengals Defense D/ST Wire FAAB Bid: $5
Atlanta Falcons Defense D/ST (8% rostered)
Can’t get the Bengals defense? No problem. Try to acquire the Atlanta Falcons for Week 8, as they’ll face a Carolina offense that has given up the ninth-most fantasy points to defenses.
The Panthers are coming off of an awful performance against the New York Giants. Carolina put up just 3 points and benched Sam Darnold before the game was over. It’s clear this team is struggling without Christian McCaffrey, as they’ve now lost each of their last 4 games.
The Falcons have sacked opposing quarterbacks in every game this season. They have done so multiple times in 3 of the last 5 games. Additionally, they have 3 interceptions in their last 2 games, while Darnold has thrown 7 interceptions in his last 4 games.
- Atlanta Falcons Defense D/ST Waiver Wire FAAB Bid: $3